Finding unique Irish brands is what we're about. Each week for Irish Made I'll be giving you the DL on the hottest companies and trends in the country.
This week things are getting funky with fashion brand House Of AKI-NA.
AKI-NA is a company that designs and manufactures men’s fashion accessories that are inspired by African culture and heritage.
Their distinctive bowties are made from top quality traditional fabrics with contemporary design to create beautiful and long-lasting products.
The company began as a student project when Joshua Doyle and Lye Ogunsanya were studying in Dublin City University. Lye wanted to facilitate opportunities within the migrant integration process in Ireland of which he experienced himself. He hoped that through this project his products would promote inclusion through their design, employment through their creation and profits help to support integrating new communities; via programs and capacity building workshops.
It seems very fitting that the companies slogan is "Look good, do good."
The company uses its profits to run training and educational courses for people living in direct provision centres. The Irish asylum system is one the harshest in Europe and by empowering people who have sought refuge in Ireland AKI-NA is helping to turn the Irish asylum system in to what it should be: a positive and empowering experience that succeeds in integrating new communities and brings value to Irish society.
Since being set up in 2013, AKI-NA has won many awards including the All Ireland Universities Social Enterprise Competition.
It's such a great idea and it's amazing to see two cultures coming together to produce something that has a positive and creative act on society.
The bowties and pocket squares are vibrant, colourful and stand out from the crowd. They come in a range of patterns and they'd make a fab gift this Christmas.
You will find the accessories brand in SEDCo on Exchequer Street.
If you want to learn a little bit more about House Of AKI-NA click here.
Header image: @houseofakina